While imprisoned in a dank cell, the Apostle Paul made a request. He asked Timothy to bring him three things. “When you come,” he said, “bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, also the books, and above all the parchments.” (2 Tim 4:13)
It certainly stirs the imagination to think what those books and parchments must have been. As for the latter, they were almost certainly the Scriptures. Would not this faithful servant desire above all else the Word of God? One can easily picture him reading the scroll of Isaiah in the dim light. So they were most likely Holy Writ.
But what of the books? What might they have been?
Here we can only guess. Whatever they were, Paul desired to have them. He wanted to pore over them again in the remaining time allotted to him.
Books are undoubtedly important. By inscribing various shaped symbols onto a clean sheet of paper, the very ideas and imaginations of men are communicated. We can be lifted out of our world into another, where we encounter all manner of strange creatures and places. We can be shown more clearly man’s true nature through the art of story. And we can actually enter into the thoughts of another, hear their views, digest their arguments, and entertain their persuasions. All of this is done through the medium of writing.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, that for many of us, books harbor a special place in our lives. Some have actually changed us. They’ve directed our steps. They’ve delighted us. That’s what great literature does.
As for the men at Gentle Reformation, they too have been deeply shaped by books. Foremost among those books would be the Bible, God’s Word. Each and every one would undoubtedly speak of the “parchments” in the highest regard. But what of the books? If they were left in a lonely place, what would they want to read? Or if they were asked to give an account of the works that have played a pivotal role in their development, what might they say?
The answer to those questions will be briefly explored here.
I posed six questions to each of the GenRef guys, questions designed to flesh out those books which have, perhaps, been most influential in their lives. The purpose is to not only shed some light on the personalities at this website, but more importantly, to hopefully provide you, the reader, with some literature that might prove beneficial. Christmas is coming after all. And a good book is often a welcome gift.
So without further ado, here’s the first batch of responses to the six questions posed. Others will hopefully be coming shortly. Read more